We had to come to Jordan because the fear overcame every other emotion. They took my husband and my brother. Only my husband returned, and we still don’t know anything about my brother.
My husband tried to work many times, but he either gets caught, or business owner would cheat him out of his pay. This made him go into a bad mental state. The poor man – he was not like this before the war in Syria. I decided to take him to CARE, where the case manager assessed his situation and referred him to medical care immediately. The doctor prescribed him medicine, and ever since, he hasn’t worked a single day. He still has panic attacks on bad days; he runs out of breath and has to leave the house or open a window immediately. The doctor taught me how to deal with him when this happens; hold his head in a certain position, make him focus on his breathing.
This is why I decided to start a business of my own, in order to provide for my family. I’ve been familiar with CARE since I arrived in Jordan. They offered my husband and I a lot of help. So when they told me one day that they are conducting a cooking course, I was ecstatic about the prospect of cooking in my house and making money. The course was so much fun, I learned a lot about owning a business, maintaining it, expanding, marketing and much more. Not to mention the cooking of course!
I received a grant to buy kitchenware to help me make Kubbeh and pastries. I also bought a deep fryer, a blender, a small refrigerator, and pots and pans. I cook for a growing customer base, which is built on word of mouth and a Facebook page that I started. I now have some elbow space in life. I can pay rent, feed my family, and make sure my children have what they need.
My best-selling dishes are the Kubbeh, tabbouleh and roast chicken. My customers are mostly Jordanians, because they all know that Syrian food is really tasty. I cook for the church as well when they have events, and this is where I make the most profit. As I said, the biggest difference is that the constant worry of not having enough money for my children’s expenses is now gone. I don’t worry about that now, which is a big relief.
My next step is to print brochures and send them with my kids to school so that the teachers and the students could also spread the word.
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